Petrobras voluntary layoff program accepted by 6,100 employees: source

August 25, 2016 5:57 PM EDT

Workers repair a tank of Brazil's state-run Petrobras oil company in Cubatao, Brazil, April 12, 2016. REUTERS/Paulo Whitaker

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SAO PAULO (Reuters) - A voluntary layoff program at state-run oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA has been accepted by 6,100 employees, a source with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters.

The number may rise by month-end, the deadline for the plan proposed by the oil giant known as Petrobras. Around 12,000 employees, or 21 percent of its workforce, are eligible.

If all eligible employees accepted the voluntary layoff program, Petrobras would face an immediate cost of 4.4 billion reais ($1.3 billion) but save 33 billion reais in salaries over the next four years, the company said upon announcing the plan.

($1 = 3.228 Brazilian reais)

(Reporting by Marta Nogueira; Writing by Tatiana Bautzer; Editing by Phil Berlowitz)

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